How to Build a Raised Vegetable Garden Bed:
The first step in building a raised vegetable garden bed is to make the frame.
- Determine the size of your box: We build our boxes all the same size 4 feet x12 feet with 2 foot cross pieces, to divide the box into 3 equal parts. We use untreated 2 x 12 boards available at most lumber yards. Steer clear of treated wood which contains chemicals and railroad ties for the same reason. When building a series of boxes, we cut all of the wood to length and then nail and screw the pieces together. It is worth it to spend a little extra time to ensure that your raised bed frame will last for years.
We have found that is easiest to build the frame and then move it to the prepared site. If you want a raised bed that is 24 inches tall, simply build two frames and attach them together with stakes.
- Next place the complete frame on level ground. Drive stakes along the inside of the bed every 4 feet into the ground to secure the frame in place. Screw the stakes to the inside of the frame.
- Lay a layer of commercial grade ground cloth down to prevent weed seed from migrating to the surface.
- Fill the bed with amended soil. If you are planting vegetables or fruits that like a higher acid pH, add peat moss and wood chips with the soil to help lower the pH value.
Depending on how large your garden area is, you can add frames together as we did in the picture at the top. We leave a 4 foot wide path between rows of raised boxes for carts and for working in the beds. In the winter we can cover each row with row crop if needed or netting the protect crops from the birds.
Next step is to plant your vegetable garden. For more articles on vegetable gardening visit our Garden Article Index